March 1, 1945 Jackie Cochran was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal for her work in World War II. As Director of Woman‘s Flying Training, along with Nancy Love Harkness she helped found the WASP – Women’s Airforce Service Pilots. Cochran was born Bessie Lee Pittman in an Alabama mill town. Cochran set out for the city, and after marrying milionaire Floyd Odlum she learned to fly, quickly racking up aviation records and firsts. She won the Bendix Cup and became the first woman to break the sound barrier and to fly a jet across the ocean.